From The Straits Times    |

Did you know that women outperform men when it comes to investment returns? According to a 10-year study by international financial consultant firm Fidelity, they make 0.4% more on average than their male counterparts.

Still, some women are hesitant to take that first step: They believe that they lack the financial knowledge to dip their toes in the water. When Her World conducted the What Women Want Financial Literacy survey in 2023, the results showed that more than 50% of respondents stated that their financial knowledge was poor to average.

But as the adage goes, Rome was not built in a day. Taking baby steps can sometimes be all the push we need to help us build our financial knowledge and confidence.

In this series, we speak to savvy women on how they invested their first $1,000, and lessons learnt along the way. Here, we ask Anna Haotanto, the 39-year-old adviser to financial and career platform The New Savvy, and CEO of Zora Health, a platform that simplifies fertility care.

What did you do with your first $1,000 investment?

I bought an IPO stock listing when I was 21 years old. I don’t remember which one, but back then, you could only buy shares in 1,000 denominations. So if the share price was $9, you had to spend $9,000.

Anna Haotanto

Why did you choose this vehicle?

I was interning in an investment bank and we were researching new stock listings. My fellow interns and I decided that this would be a good entry point for us to invest.

What pushed you to make your first investment?

I wanted to make my money work harder for me, instead of just earning a wage.

How did it perform for you?

Terribly at first, but I held it and chased out at 23% profit.

What did you learn from that investment?

Always do my research, and understand what I am buying. And start early, no matter how small it is!